Reflecting on my goals and intentions for 2020 and beyond, I’m thinking about the words of Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN) CEO Amit Boury. He’s an inspiring guy, in words and deeds. I saw him in at the 2019 GIIN Investor Forum in Amsterdam last October. Here’s a sample in a video of a talk he gave. If you’re moving to fast to watch a 4-minute video, my first piece of advice is to slow down. My second is to read these rough, approximate notes I made from his talk:
‘As big as the impact investing market is today – $502 billion – it needs to be a lot bigger. We need to move capital at a vastly different scale…. We need to engage more investors, and we need everyone to allocate for impact…. Almost 50 years ago (some of American economist Milton Friedman’s ideas) reshaped the global economy…. (He believed that) business owners should increase profit for shareholders with no regard for social or environmental consequences. (That idea) became the source code for the past 50 years of capitalism. (It influenced precedents, laws, doctrines, business and culture.) But we can no longer afford to pay the social and environmental price of this philosophy.
‘(In August) more than 180 global companies (the Business Roundtable, including JP Morgan Chase, Apple, WalMart and Pepsi) defined a new role for business: balancing the need for shareholder returns with other stakeholders, (including those of) local communities. Words are not same as actions, but these global leaders acknowledged their responsibility for the long-term impact of their actions.
‘We’re not just building a market. We’re building a movement to make impact investing the new normal. Let’s hold business responsible to all stakeholders, including the Earth. We need billions of people to think and act differently. If we want to … transform the role of capital, we need everyone on board…. a force that calls for change with one voice. What unifies all of us in this room? A vision of fostering widespread change. Our vision is of a world where financial markets serve all members of society and play a central role in solving social and environmental challenges facing the global community. Investors must integrate impact into all decisions, building strong communities, a healthy environment and a sustainable future for all people. That vision has tremendous power, but we have to support that vision with our actions.’
I’m in. Hope you are too.